Welcome to Khalmion
by Shurkhrat Karimov
KIRGHIZSTAN, France - 2015 - 52 MINUTES
They live on the border between Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan, use sim cards and banknotes of the two states without distinction, are farmers, artisans or traders and transport smuggled goods: fruits, vegetables and small low-end items from Chinese manufacture. The border which practically passes in the main street of the village determines for many their way of life and their vision of the world.
And the second peculiarity of this village is that for more than forty years, they have been speaking among themselves in French. Why ? Because “French is the most beautiful language in the world!”. In this village, for more than forty years, French has been taught at the local school. The level of education is surprisingly excellent considering the remoteness of the village. In 2008, Islomiddine Azimov, instigator of the teaching of French, was awarded the Order of Academic Palms of the French Republic.
These Central Asian peasants who plow their land with manual plows, heat their homes with sun-dried cow dung and prepare their meals on a fire outside, also speak impeccable French. It looks more like a pure invention than reality. And maybe it's something in between? Something that is right on the border.
High Production Life
Central Asia Film